Tire Rotation and Tire Balancing in Tucson, AZ
Make sure you get the most from your investment in your new tires by keeping up with a maintenance schedule that includes tire rotation and tire balancing.
Come to BRAKEmax Tire & Service Centers for expert tire services provided by our ASE-certified technicians at every location.
Tire Rotation Service in Tucson
Proper tire rotation helps your tires wear more evenly and maximizes the life of your tires. Regular tire rotation also allows our tire experts to inspect your tires for other issues that may affect performance.
The mechanics at your nearest BRAKEmax Tire & Service Centers location will quickly rotate your tires and also let you know if any of your tires are no longer roadworthy. Tires with too much wear can make your vehicle less stable and make driving more dangerous. Worn tires can also increase fuel consumption, as this puts a greater strain on your engine. We can also help you make the best choice of replacement tires if that becomes necessary. BRAKEmax carries all major tire brands!
Tire tread wear can cause cupping or wearing on one side of the tire. This changes the way the tire deals with bumps or slopes on the road. You will be able to feel this in the steering, and a car that pulls to one side can be difficult to drive. Plus, fighting this pull to one side can be extremely tiring over long distances.
Tire rotation is one of the simplest ways to extend the life of your tires and ensure your vehicle runs more efficiently. Our goal at BRAKEmax is to prevent tire repairs before they happen. And the tire rotation cost is minimal as part of a preventive maintenance package.
Tucson Tire Rotation Basics
All the tires on your car or truck wear at different rates. This means that rotating the tires on a regular schedule extends tire life by breaking tire wear patterns. On a front-wheel drive vehicle the rear tires should get moved to the front and the front tires to the rear. The goal is to keep the best tires on the front of the car. The front tires tend to wear faster since they are the driving and steering tires. Rotating them regularly will allow for maximum wear from all the tires. This will also create more stability on the road.
Check your car’s owner’s manual for the recommended rotation pattern or consult our Tucson tire technicians about the best rotation to get the most out of the tire.
Tires that are never rotated can create a dangerous situation for anyone on the road around you as well as those in the car. A blowout of one of your tires, especially at high speeds, can be deadly. Worn tires also strain your engine, increasing fuel consumption.
When you drive into one of our Tucson auto shops for a tire inspection, the tires and wheels on your vehicle will be moved to new positions, but the tire specialists will also check for any other problems while they perform this service. And if any of your tires need to be replaced, our service staff will help you pick out the best tire for you. When you say, “Rotate tires!” much more happens at BRAKEmax.
Tire Rotation Schedule
Tire experts recommend new tires be rotated at 5,000 miles, and then every 6,000 to 8,000 miles after that. New tires have deeper tread, so the tires wear quickly, but, in that case, a longer interval is all that is necessary.
If you make it a habit to have your tires rotated whenever you have your oil changed, you won’t have to remember an additional schedule! Ask one of our Tucson tire rotation mechanics to add this service to your oil change schedule.
Tire Rotation Exceptions
Every guideline or rule has exceptions. This is true for tire rotation, too. Here are some things to keep in mind about rotating the tires on your vehicles:
The tread on these tires only goes in one direction. For this reason, they must move only from back to front, not from one side of the car to the other. This limits the benefits of tire rotation, so directional tires don’t get as much benefit from being rotated. Check with our Tucson tire repair team about how often to perform this service.
Truck tires are sometimes not the same on the front and rear axles. This is because load ratings and tread patterns can differ for the needs and type of the truck. Rotation in this case may not always be practical.
Tire Balancing Service in Tucson, AZ
Tire balancing is a separate service from tire alignment. Your vehicle will provide a smooth ride as long as the tread on every tire is even and the tires are in balance. In order to accomplish that, each tire needs to weigh exactly the same as the others. But tread wears as it turns on the surface of the road, so the weight changes. The problem is that each tire wears down differently on each wheel assembly, so they become unbalanced. Unbalanced tires can also happen due to damaged wheels or bent rims.
These weight imbalances cause your car or truck to vibrate or have other performance issues. The tread will also wear faster. The vibrations will get progressively more noticeable the faster the car is moving.
Tire Balancing Basics
When your front tires are out of balance, this results in a steering wheel vibration. When your rear tires are unbalanced, seat vibrations are the result. If these imbalances aren’t corrected quickly, your tires will wear even faster or more unevenly. Your vehicle also will begin to require more gas to keep up with the worn tires.
If tires are left unbalanced, your shocks, bearings, and eventually the wheel assembly will be damaged. The result is a costly fix plus the amount of vibration becoming more and more dangerous. When weight is distributed evenly around the tire/wheel assembly, you’ll have a smoother ride, and your tires will last longer.
Our Tucson tire balancing mechanics use a computerized balancing machine to make these corrections. The machine spins each tire at highway speeds and the computer identifies where the tire is unbalanced. Then, the system identifies where small weights should be placed on the wheel. The technician places these thin metal pieces on the wheel’s rim to bring the tire back into balance.
Our tire balancing services in Tucson include removing the tires and wheels, mounting the wheels on this specialized equipment, correcting imbalances, and remounting the tires and wheels.
We recommend that you come in for balancing services if you notice vibrations in your steering wheel, seat, or floorboards at high speeds or a cupped wear pattern on your tires.
Tire Balancing Schedule
New tires are generally aligned and balanced when they are placed on the car. After that, routine preventive maintenance is the key. A good guideline is to have the tires rebalanced every two years or every 5,000 to 7,500 miles.
However, if you notice vibrations beginning at any point in the life of the tires, have the tires inspected. Another effective tactic is to have the tires rebalanced whenever they are rotated. Ask our Tucson tire mechanics to set up a schedule for you.
It’s also a good policy to check your vehicle’s owner’s manual for their recommendation on a tire balancing schedule.
Schedule a Tire Rotation & Balancing Service in Tucson Today
Tire rotation and tire balancing are two separate services, but both are essential to ensure your safety and extend the life of your tires.
Come to the experts at BRAKEmax Tire & Service Centers for all your tire service needs. Book your appointment at the BRAKEmax location that fits your schedule and geographic area.
Don’t forget to check all the tire rotation and balancing specials and coupons on the BRAKEmax website! Our goals are to provide superior quality auto service, customer service, and the best value in tires and tire care.
Frequently Asked Questions
If your tires are relatively new, we recommend having them rotated at the 5,000-mile mark because their deeper tread is more susceptible to uneven wear. For older tires, keep to a tire rotation schedule of 6,000 to 8,000 miles to help ensure all of your tires last longer and wear more evenly. At BRAKEmax, we recommend that you have your tires checked and rotated during your regular oil and filter change appointment.
Tire rotation is a task best left to the professionals. Our ASE-certified technicians will ensure that your tires are properly aligned and moved to the proper position on your car or truck. As we rotate your tires, we will also check your tire pressure and look for any early signs of other types of issues you may have with your tires.
Wheel alignment and wheel balancing are two different tasks. When we align your wheels, we check and adjust the angles of your wheels. This helps your tires last longer and helps your car or truck track straight as you’re driving. Wheel balancing is done to make sure your tire/wheel assemblies are spinning properly, which also contributes to tire life and driving performance.
Yes, and you should! Although experienced mechanics can spot several types of issues that may not be readily apparent, all car and truck owners can do their own thorough inspections to catch tire problems early.
We recommend that you closely inspect your tires about once a month. Here’s what you can do:
- Check your tread depth: Shallow tread is one of the most common causes of poor tire performance and can even make your tires unsafe. To make sure you tread is at least 2/32” deep, insert a penny head first into the tread; if you can see the top of Lincoln’s head, the tire should be replaced as soon as possible.
- Look at wear patterns: Tires that have been well maintained (such as having regular rotation and balancing) should wear evenly. Schedule an appointment for a tire inspection and tire rotation at your nearest BRAKEmax store.
- Check for objects embedded in tread: It’s normal for tire tread to pick up debris from the road, but the sooner you find and remove any bits of glass, stone, or metal, the better your chances of preventing problems later on.
- Look for damage: Check for holes and punctures, cracks, and cuts. Pay particular attention to your tires’ sidewalls—a split or other type of damage there can make your tires unsafe.
Spare tires don’t get much use, so they’re less likely to be out of balance. The main concern with a spare tire is its condition: You should also inspect your spare when you take a look at your regular tires. We’ll be glad to take a look at your spare tire when you come in for any of our services to make sure the rubber is in good condition and that your spare tire will be ready to roll if you ever need it.
BRAKEmax Tire & Service Centers is your one-stop shop for all of your tire needs. In addition to tire rotation and tire balancing, we offer flat tire repair, tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) service, tire sales, and much more.
Whichever BRAKEmax service you need, be sure to check our coupons page when you make your appointment. You’ll find savings on everything from alignment checks and oil changes, to diagnostic service and fuel injection service. We also have the latest manufacturers’ rebates on new tires.
You can save even more with BRAKEmax credit cards, including:
- The BRAKEmax VIP CFNA credit card, which offers a line of credit for car repairs, no annual fee, and low monthly payments.
- The Goodyear credit card for tire specials and special financing. Benefits include eligibility for double rebates on Goodyear Tire purchases.
- The Synchrony Bank CarCareONE card, with no interest if paid in full within six months when you purchase $199 or more.
Between the front and rear axles of your vehicle, your tires wear at different rates. So, if you were to leave all your tires in their current positions for an extended period, each one would develop excessive wear where the greatest friction is when braking, turning, or driving straight.
This means that the tires’ tread will wear unevenly without routine tire rotation, creating a rough and potentially unstable surface. This type of tread wear can significantly decrease your vehicle’s safety on the road, possibly causing hydroplaning, excessive heat buildup, poor traction in ice and snow, and increased risk of blowouts or punctures.
Keeping up with consistent tire rotations will ensure more even tire wear and allow the mechanic to visually inspect the tires for any abnormal wear or other issues and catch them early.
If you are only replacing two out of four tires, the placement of the new tires is very important for vehicle drivability and safety. The partially worn tires should go to the front, and the two new tires should be installed on the rear.
When the tires with more tread are on the back of the vehicle, the vehicle is generally considered easier to control. For example, putting the new tires with the deeper tread on the rear axle can help maintain control of the vehicle on wet roads and reduce the chance of hydroplaning or fishtailing. This is the case whether the vehicle is rear-wheel, front-wheel, or all-wheel drive.
A noticeable vibration is the first and most common indication of one or more unbalanced tires. This vibration is caused by the imbalanced tire wobbling or hopping up and down. It will usually be much more evident when you drive at highway speeds (usually above 50 miles per hour).
If you feel a steering wheel vibration, this usually means a front tire is out of balance. If the vibration is in your seat or the floor, the imbalance is usually on a rear tire. The vibration’s severity will depend on how unbalanced the tire is, your speed, and the driving conditions.
Because there are many variables involved, there isn’t one exact answer to this question. But tires usually last an average of 50,000 to 60,000 miles. People drive, on average, between 12,000 and 15,000 miles per year, which means a good quality all-season tire will usually last between three and five years.
The variety of factors that affect the life of your tires include:
- The type/brand of tire.
- The number of miles you are putting on your vehicle.
- How well you keep up with routine tire maintenance, including regular tire pressure checks, tire rotation service, and tire balancing (aka wheel balancing) when needed.
- Frequently driving at higher speeds, hard braking, cornering, etc., can wear tires down faster.
- Frequently hauling heavy loads or towing will also cause the tread to wear faster.
If you’ve been driving on your current tires for more than five years, we recommend having them inspected to check that there are no issues present that could impact their drivability. No matter what tire type you have, most will need to be replaced at the ten-year mark.
A tire rotation is a relatively fast and easy service compared to some other vehicle maintenance services. Usually, a tire rotation service will take anywhere between 30 and 45 minutes.
Of course, that timeframe assumes that you have an appointment. If you haven’t scheduled an appointment and the shop is busy, you may encounter some wait time in addition to the time needed to rotate tires.
Both services help ensure even tire wear across all four tires, but a tire rotation will not impact the wheel alignment on your vehicle. So, it isn’t imperative to have the alignment adjusted every time you have a tire rotation done.
But it’s important to follow the recommended schedule for both tire maintenance services. Not only do they both help extend your tires’ lifespan, but they also help detect any other issues that may be present. For example, if your vehicle’s alignment is off, this can often be seen when a tire rotation is performed.
Tire balancing is the equivalent of a tune-up for your wheel/tire assemblies, and this service ensures that the weight is distributed evenly around the wheel’s entire circumference. To further expand on exactly what tire balancing does for your vehicle, there are several specific benefits of this maintenance service:
1. You’ll get a smoother ride:
One of the biggest and most noticeable benefits of tire balancing is that you’ll enjoy a smoother ride in your vehicle. When the weight is not evenly distributed on one or more tires, you may experience noticeable vibrations in your vehicle.
A surefire sign that a tire is out of balance is if you notice shaking in your steering wheel when driving on the highway. If you continue to drive on one or more unbalanced tires, it will begin to cause a consistent, noticeable vibration through not only the steering wheel but the entire vehicle. This reduces the comfort of your vehicle while you are out on the road.
Tire balancing service will usually eliminate these vibrations entirely, giving you a much smoother and more enjoyable ride.
2. Extends your tires’ lifespan:
Excess wear and tear on your vehicle’s tires can significantly reduce their lifespan. So, when you have one or more tires that are out of balance, the excessive vibrations and uneven tread wear that those vibrations cause can lead to your tires wearing out faster.
3. Helps ensure better fuel mileage:
Keeping your tires properly balanced will help optimize your fuel mileage. Unbalanced tires can’t drive evenly, and an uneven ride can quickly cause uneven tire tread wear, reducing your vehicle’s overall efficiency.
By ensuring that the weight is evenly distributed on each of your vehicle’s tires, you’ll significantly help prevent tread wear that can negatively impact your vehicle’s gas mileage. Thus, saving you money at the pump over time.
4. Protects your vehicle’s suspension from excess stress:
Unbalanced tires can also negatively impact your vehicle’s suspension components. Over time, the vibrations caused by any unbalanced tires will continue to get worse.
These vibrations can put excess stress on your vehicle’s suspension, including the shocks, struts, ball joints, and bushings. This added wear and tear can be equivalent to constantly driving over potholes. So, tire balancing is a relatively quick and cheap tire maintenance service that can prevent much more expensive suspension repairs down the line.
5. Your vehicle will be safer on the road:
The most important benefit of tire balancing is that it helps ensure your vehicle’s safety while driving. Unbalanced tires can develop dangerously uneven tread patterns and bald spots, making it much more difficult to control your vehicle on wet roads or at high speeds. Regularly balancing your tires when needed will help ensure that your vehicle is always in top shape.
It can be risky to continue driving on unbalanced tires, but it’s not always possible to have them rebalanced right away. If you must, you can drive on unbalanced tires for roughly two to three months. But it shouldn’t go much longer than that.
More so than the unbalanced tire itself, the problems it causes can be dangerous. These problems include:
1. Dangerous reduction in vehicle handling:
The most important impact of driving on unbalanced tires is the increased safety risk due to reduced handling. Out-of-balance tires can cause traction loss, making it hard to safely control your vehicle. This can possibly lead to an accident and, in an extreme case, a fatality.
2. Excessive tire wear:
An imbalance in a tire/wheel assembly puts a lot of pressure on the tire, and this causes increased wear and tear on the tread. The increased and uneven tread wear can not only cause problems with the vehicle’s handling but also lead to the need to replace tires much sooner and an increased chance of a tire blowout.
3. Significant negative impact on the vehicle’s suspension:
The two main jobs of your suspension system are to provide a comfortable ride and reduce any vibration. Since unbalanced tires lead to a vibration that gets progressively worse, the excess pressure put on the suspension components will also increase, thus, increasing the damage done to your vehicle. Remember, the cost of having a tire balancing service done will be much less than having to fix or replace suspension system parts.